There used to be several pubs in Broadwindsor but the popular White Lion was the last remaining. However, the landlords moved on and the pub closed in May 2021. The owners, Palmers Brewery, approached the Parish Council to see if there was interest in running the pub as a community enterprise. A survey was conducted and responses received from over 2/3 of 300 (approx) households in the local vicinity. 95% of respondents said they wanted a pub in the village and there was also a clear desire for good home-cooked food using ingredients produced and sourced locally. A public meeting was convened at the Village Hall and attended by more than 70 people – a huge turnout given the social restrictions we’ve been living with recently. At the end of the session, those present voted unanimously for the team to continue with the project.
The management team continued to meet regularly to brain storm ideas for fundraising and channel their collective expertise into moving the project along. This has resulted in us now becoming a 'not for profit' company limited by guarantee. The committtee continued to work on progressing recruitment and ideas towards the refurbishment of the pub.
Online updates on progress are regularly posted via www.savethewhitelion.org
A further public meeting was held on 11th January attended by over 70 people with a further 40+ attending via Zoom. A lively, constructive discussion ensued, both physically and virtually, and the mood of the meeting was both uplifting and positive demonstrating a huge appetite to see this project come to fruition. Those attending were unanimous in wanting fundraising to commence.
The aim is to be modestly profitable but not for private profit. The White Lion will offer food and drink with an emphasis on local produce. We will strive to create a warm, friendly atmosphere and want the pub to be a hub for the community to visit, meet in and carry out as many community activities as possible. These will be as diverse as The Church Group, the Over 60's, Broadwindsor Fun Day Group, Young Farmers, the White Lion Book & Pudding Club to name but a few. As a community venture, we will welcome and look to adopt any suggestions from the community that are feasible within the available space.
Supporters should be aware that their contributions are donations and not an investment in Broadwindsor Community Pub Ltd (BPC). BPC is a company limited by guarantee and should any donor wish to become a member of BPC as well, please complete and return the application form sourced from the Save the White Lion website at https://savethewhitelion.org , currently at the foot of the donation page although it will be soon moving to a separate membership page. The membership fee is £5 which will be considered to be part of any donation of £5 or greater. Each member is entitled to one vote at any meeting of the company.
Our aim is to raise funds over the coming 4 weeks and to start the renovation work before the end of February. The money raised will be used to renovate the bar area, to purchase essential kitchen equipment and provide working capital.
The following collection of photographs will give you a feel for how the White Lion has been central to our community over the years, not only to those of us on 2 legs but also for many of those on 4!
The above was taken at the outset of WW1 when horses from local farms were requisitioned for the War in France. It could have been the subject of a film.....
And more recently
And the White Lion has long been at the centre of the community having fun, both inside and out!
Over 120 people attended our public meeting on 11th January either in person or virtually. These are some of those who attended Comrades Hall
And even features on Christmas cards. You may have received one!
Please help us add many more memorable occasions and support us in saving our White Lion!